10.01.2013
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Clarifying Mask
Rating
1.7 fl. oz. for $25.95
Category:Skin Care > Facial Masks
Last Updated:10.01.2013
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

Clarifying Mask is one of the most irritating masks for acne-prone skin that we've ever reviewed! Although its two active ingredients (sulfur and resorcinol) are both potent disinfectants capable of killing acne-causing bacteria, they're rarely used alone (and even rarer together) due to both being quite drying and potentially irritating.

This absorbent clay mask may have been a decent option for very oily skin with cystic-type breakouts, but it also contains skin irritant camphor and an ingredient that enhances penetration of the camphor plus the other problematic ingredients this mask contains. Clarifying Mask presents more risks than benefits for acne-prone, oily skin and is not recommended.

Pros:
  • Capable of killing acne-causing bacteria.
  • Absorbs excess oil.
Cons:
  • Both of the active ingredients are known to be drying and potentially irritating.
  • Contains camphor, a potent skin irritant.
  • Zinc oxide keeps this mask from rinsing easily.
More Info:

The inactive ingredients for this clay mask are listed in alphabetical order rather than in descending order of content. This is permissible in this case because the product is regulated as an over-the-counter drug in the United States. However, we have more respect for companies that choose instead to list their inactive ingredients in descending order of concentration, so you know more about what you are putting on your face, just like with any other mask.

Claims

Clarifying Mask removes impurities and absorbs excess oil. Helps prevent the development of new acne pimples and blackheads. Use 1-2 times per week to reduce acne severity and eliminate blackheads.

Ingredients

Active Ingredients: Sulfur 3%; Resorcinol 2%. Inactive Ingredients: Bentonite, Charcoal Powder, Camphor, Chloroxylenol, Glycerin, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Polyacrylate Crosspolymer-6, Propanediol, Propylene Glycol, Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate, Stearic Acid, Water, Zinc Oxide.

Brand Overview

Strengths: The company provides complete ingredient lists on its site; good cleanser; excellent benzoyl peroxide product; some fragrance-free options (and even the products with fragrant ingredients have minimal scent).

Weaknesses: The facial mask is likely to be very irritating and drying; the Clear Pore Serum cannot exfoliate skin due to its pH level; each kit the company sells contains at least one problematic product, so they’re not as much of a value as they may seem; merely average moisturizer.

Exposed Skincare is a small collection of anti-acne products sold individually or in pre-selected kits that are priced between $50–$95. Based in Seattle and having been around since 2002, it’s only recently that this line has come to our attention, perhaps due to their products being available on mega website Amazon.com. As a line dedicated to clear skin in a sea full of such options (almost all of which have their share of problems, which is hugely disappointing for anyone struggling with breakouts), it’s not surprising Exposed Skincare mentions their mix of “advanced science” with natural ingredients, thus appeasing two popular demands: Consumers want products that work, but most would prefer natural over synthetic ingredients, thinking that natural means better. As we’ve shown time and time again, that’s misguided thinking. There are good and bad natural ingredients as well as good and bad synthetic ingredients. We’re glad that Exposed Skincare utilizes the best from both groups (well, most of the time they do…)

The company’s products are said to be developed by a collaboration between dermatologists, cosmetologists, naturopaths, and chemists, further reinforcing the science + nature angle, which Exposed maintains is what makes their line different (and better) than the rest. Although this anti-acne line has a couple of standout products, just like most lines aimed at those with acne-prone skin, there are more disappointments than great products. This is not a “one and done” line, nor is it a line whose kits we’d encourage you to order.

The issue with the kits is twofold: They cost a lot less than ordering each product individually BUT you also have to take everything in the kit, which means you’re paying for some products whose formulas won’t help acne-prone skin and may, in fact, make it worse! If you’re curious about this line, steer clear of the value-priced kits and instead select individual products we’ve rated well. Of course, you can also skip this line entirely, as despite some good products, it’s not as revolutionary or different as the company would like you to believe.

For more information about Exposed Skincare, call (866) 404-7656 or visit www.exposedskincare.com

About the Experts

The new Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment to help you find the best products possible for your skin. We do this by relentlessly pursuing and relying on published scientific research so you will have unbiased information on what works and what doesn't-and the sneaky ways you could be making your skin worse, not better!


The Beautypedia Team reviews all products using the same research, criteria, and objectivity, whether the product being reviewed is from Paula's Choice or another brand.

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